Punarnava (Boerhavia diffusa) Ayurvedic herb

What's Punarnava?

Punarnava, a powerful ayurvedic plant with several health benefits and has been in use since ancient times in treating a range of health ailments. Commonly called Hogweed, Sterling, Tarvine in English, it's botanical name is Boerhavia diffusa.

Punarnava is a classic ayurvedic plant that's used to rejuvenate the entire body. The plant, in its entirety, is used in treating rheumatoid arthritis, fever, edema, eye problems, stomach problems, and liver ailments. Punarnava translates into 'something that replenishes the body or a reviver and is an herb belonging to the Nyctaginaceae family characterized by their distinctive fruit called anthocarp. 

Ayurveda medicine holds a good deal of great herbs that contain medicinal properties. Punarnava is an herb that's often utilized in Ayurveda medicine. The plant has a lot of potential benefits associated with that. Both women and men may have the ability to obtain an edge when they use a supplement with this plant. It provides relief from inflammation, works as a blood purifier, gives resistance to the body, helps joint pains, and enhances lungs functioning.

Punarnava is a flowering medicinal plant. Additionally, it is classified as a perennial diffuse herb. 

The plant comprises certain chemicals that have been linked to possible medicinal benefits. Some of the substances that play a part in providing the medicinal properties associated with the plant include Ursolic acid, Arachidic acid, B-Sitosterol, A-2-Sitosterol, Punarnavine, Stearic Boerhaavia acid ester of b-sitosterol, Tetracosanoic, Hentriacontane, and more. Aside from these, several different chemicals also have been identified in the plant. This contributes to the health benefits that someone may experience when they use a Punarnava supplement.

The herb Punarnava contains three different tastes, chiefly Madhura (sweet ), Tikta (bitter), and Kashaya (astringent) Rasa. It's Laghu (mild ) and Rukhsha Guna (dry quality) and Ushna Virya (hot potency). It characterizes Madhura Vipaka (sweet flavor after digestion) and mainly portrays rejuvenating property. The host of bioactive elements in Punarnava accounts for the Tridoshas and helps pacify the Vata (atmosphere ) and Kapha (soil and water) doshas. It effectively eliminates the AMA doshas that are toxins in the body. 

Nutritional facts of punarnava:

Punarnava is a treasure trove of nutrients such as proteins, vitamin C, sodium, calcium, iron, and many bioactive elements. These elements include hypoxanthine 9-L-arabinofuranoside, punarnavoside, serratagenic acid,  boeravinone A to F, liriodendron, ursolic acid, and oleanolic acid. Punarnava holds high importance in promoting digestion, heart health, improving vision, and preventing diseases like diabetes, arthritis, impotence, urinary tract disease, gout, and nausea.

See: Herbs For Diabetes That Lower Blood Sugar

Punarnava health benefits

Health Benefits Of Punarnava

The following is a list of benefits that have been studied by researchers:

- Improves Cardiovascular Health

Compounds within the plant may also benefit the cardiovascular system. 1 research paper6 lists Punarnava among the best herbal medicines used in primary health care. The paper focuses on the medical system in Karnataka. The plant is often utilized to aid in the management of cardiovascular conditions in the region.

- May Treat Arthritis

Punarnava has potent analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties, which helps reduce muscle and joint pain, reducing the odds of chronic autoimmune inflammatory diseases like rheumatoid arthritis. A paste of the grounded leaves of this herb efficiently provides relief from the inflammation and pain. 

- Aids In Digestion

The herb is very beneficial in reducing inflammation and healing irritable bowel syndrome and ulcerative colitis. Being a potent digestive agent stimulates digestive juices' secretion, thereby increasing the absorption of essential nutrients and improving digestion.

- Helps Manage Diabetes

The hypoglycaemic property of Punarnava is very beneficial in regulating the human body's blood glucose levels. The production of insulin in the β pancreatic tissues becomes active while taking this herb. It helps decrease the breakdown of starch into sugar, which then prevents the spike in blood glucose. 

- Prevents Urinary Diseases

Punarnava plays an integral role in preventing and treating urinary distension, kidney stones, and painful urination. The herb has powerful anti-spasmodic, anti-microbial, and anti-inflammatory properties that help prevent bacterial infections in the urinary tract and reduce inflammation and pain when urinating.  A critical benefit of this plant is associated with the renal and urinary system. The plant owns anti-inflammatory properties. Additionally, it has been found that Punarnava comprises powerful antioxidants.

The plant also appears to be a powerful diuretic. Using Punarnava supplements may help out with promoting improvements in the elimination of excess fluids in the body. The diuretic effects of the plant might also be helpful in people with particular urine symptoms.

Several scientific publications have appeared at using Punarnava in treating urinary symptoms. One paper describes the prevalence of the plant in folk medicine among the Northeast Gujarat area. The item is used to treat many urinary tract infections within this region. 

- May help men with enlarged prostate

Punarnava benefits men with an enlarged prostate. This type of benefit is directly connected to the medicinal properties which come in handy when menopausal symptoms grow. A benign enlarged prostate can place pressure on the urethra. The main symptoms of an enlarged prostate are usually linked to urinary symptoms. One paper describes this illness's primary indications as a frequent desire to urinate, together with nighttime urination (nocturia). The anti-inflammatory effects might also be helpful for men with an enlarged prostate. This may help in reducing inflammation, which affects the thyroid gland. The antioxidant effects benefit the prostate gland as well.

- Encourages Weight Loss

The rejuvenating herb plays an integral role in burning excess fat. The presence of the potent bioactive components prevents weight gain and lowers the bad cholesterol from the blood. It washes out the surplus unwanted fluids and harmful toxins from the body and keeps bodyweight being a mild laxative. The excess fluid loss in the body might help an individual who's attempting to drop weight. This property makes the product suitable for treating obesity too.

- Improves Wound Healing

Some evidence suggests that extracts of this Punarnava plant might help accelerate wound healing too. In one review conducted among a local population in the Garhwal Himalayan area, researchers found that Punarnava is a frequent plant used to treat wounds. The Journal of Traditional & Complementary Medicine published a study that studied the Punarnava leaf extract effect on wounds. It concluded that wounds heal significantly faster when the leaf extract was implemented.

Another study clarifies that Punarnava may help in managing geriatric anemia. The study focused on using the plant among elderly patients. In a different study, researchers show evidence that the plant is also helpful for preventing adrenal dysfunction. The study mainly focused on research subjects who had previously experienced issues with their cardiovascular health.

- Other Possible Benefits

Aside from the advantages listed above, there are numerous other medicinal uses for the Punarnava plant. The plant appears to be helpful for the whole renal system including the kidneys. Sometimes, the plant is used to help in the treatment of kidney stones and kidney ailments.

The Punarnava plant also holds advantages for the hepatic system. This hepaprotective properties of this plant make it helpful in the management of liver-related ailments. The plant is sometimes utilized to help in treating hepatitis and jaundice.

People with sciatica may benefit from Punarnava. The plant was proven to maintain benefits for the nervous system. Conditions that cause fatigue may also benefit.

An extract from the root infusion is used as a liver and kidney tonic. It improves the kidneys functioning that have been damaged by diabetes and may be good for chronic kidney disease. Being a diuretic and mild laxative, it prevents fluid retention and assists in detoxification.

See: Ayurvedic herbs for weight loss treatments

Punarnava side effects

There are possible side-effects a person might encounter when they use a Punarnava supplement. Precautions help to decrease the risk of serious adverse events while utilizing the supplement.

It is recommended to seek a consultation with a physician before using any supplements. Complete disclosure of medication enables the healthcare provider to see if there might be any interactions. Few of the side-effects that may be experienced include:

- There's a risk of increased blood pressure.

- Many folks experience a burning sensation in their throat. This is generally true if the supplement is taken without food or water.

- Individuals with ethanol allergies may experience an allergic response. The plant extract does include some alcohol and ethanol.

- Punarnava isn't recommended for pregnant women. There's very little information available about the safety of the plant during pregnancy. Thus, women are somewhat advised to avoid using the product in this period.

- Punarnava isn't advised to be taken with alcohol. The plant extracts contain alcohol. Together with additional alcohol, side-effects might be aggravated. This may lead to nausea. The alcohol in the item may also interfere with someone's ability to drive safely.

- Overdosing on Punarnava may also lead to complications. Therefore, dosage instructions should be carefully followed. This enables the individual to gain benefits without experiencing severe dangers when using the plant. The plant can also be considered possibly dangerous for small children. It's not advised for any individual under the age of 12 years.

See: Ayurvedic Herbs For Arthritis Remedies

Dosage

Some side-effects can happen when taking a lot of this plant. On the other hand, taking too little may not yield any noticeable health benefits. Suitable dosage instructions help to make sure people can experience the anticipated benefits. Additionally, it lessens the chance of adverse effects related to an overdose. The dosage is dependent upon how the item is used. The particular form of the supplement should be taken into consideration. 

When the entire plant is used, up to 30 g can be taken as a daily functioning. When using a new juice that has Punarnava extract, up to 20ml could be obtained as a daily dose.

Root powder extract should be taken with care. A lower dose is advised because of the potency of these compounds in the root of the plant. People can usually go through the medicinal effects of the gland with a dose as low as one-gram daily.

See: Foods & Herbs For Kidneys Blood Cleanser & Purifier

Summary

Punarnava is a herb that forms part of Ayurveda herbal medicine. The whole plant is often utilized to produce supplements that help manage and treat various problems. Punarnava has a comprehensive list of possible benefits.

Men may also benefit from the plant if they've prostate problems. The plant might help to relieve urinary symptoms caused by an enlarged prostate. The swelling of the prostate could be reduced using a Punarnava supplement. Punarnava inhibits five alpha-reductase enzymes to stop the conversion of testosterone to DHT and shrink the prostate. It comprises Beta-Sitosterol and Ursolic acid, in addition to vitamin D and E, all crucial nutritional supplements for prostate health. Ursolic acid has anti-inflammatory properties, which may decrease inflammation of the prostate and urethra. Meanwhile, beta-sitosterols have been proven to help alleviate BPH symptoms by boosting your urine flow rate.

See: Ayurveda for heart health

References

1. AYU Journal. (2014) A clinical study of Punarnava Mandura in the management of Pandu Roga in old age (geriatric anemia). [online] Available at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4649575/

2. PLoS ONE. (2014) Protective Effect of Boerhaavia diffusa L. against Mitochondrial Dysfunction in Angiotensin II Induced Hypertrophy in H9c2 Cardiomyoblast Cells. [online] Available at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4005769/

3. InformedHealth.org. (2008) Benign enlarged prostate: Overview. [online] Available at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK279204/

4. NISCAIR Online Periodicals Reports. (2005) Traditional knowledge on medicinal plants among rural women of the Garhwal Himalaya, Uttaranchai. [online] Available at: http://nopr.niscair.res.in/handle/123456789/8516

5. Journal of Traditional and Complementary Medicine. (2020) Metabolite profiling and wound-healing activity of Boerhavia diffusa leaf extracts using in vitro and in vivo models. [online] Available at: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2225411018303420

6. NISCAIR Online Periodicals Reports. (2010) Hundred common forest medicinal plants of Karnataka in primary healthcare. [online] Available at: http://nopr.niscair.res.in/handle/123456789/7160

7. NISCAIR Online Periodicals Reports. (2009) Medicinal plants of Muzaffarnagar district used in the treatment of urinary tract and kidney stones. [online] Available at: http://nopr.niscair.res.in/handle/123456789/3943

8. NISCAIR Online Periodicals Reports. (2010) Herbal folk medicines used for urinary complaints in tribal pockets of Northeast Gujarat. [online] Available at: http://nopr.niscair.res.in/handle/123456789/7168

See: Vitamins & Supplements For Diabetes

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